This article took some time in the making, but we are so VERY glad and incredibly grateful to the staff at Lonely Planet working with us and Shikoku Tourism in the production of this publication. It really is an incredible thing when we are able to get the attention of one of the leading voices and institutions of Tourism and Travel. Please read the article here:
It has been such a great privilege and pleasure to write articles for the Lonely Planet and it is a great chance for us to help focus the attention of the world on the Shikoku region.
We really feel that the timing of this article is extremely appropriate for the times in which we are living. The corona virus has been not only so disruptive to the every day lives of everyone on the planet, but in far too many cases, has also been deadly and devestating. We have seen so many people lose their lives prematurely due to the corona virus, sometimes compounding health issues, and being especially catastrophic to our seniors.
We all know someone whose life has been damaged, or even lost, due to COVID 19. As we are slowly now coming out of the catastrophe that the pandemic has brought, so many people have lost work, homes, relatives, friends, and loved ones. It is not so simple to just “get back to work”, or “return to normal”. Too much has happened, and too much is “not normal”.
We need to take time to reset and figure out what to do next. Those who have lost loved ones may need time to mourn and grieve. Those who have lost their work or business need to figure out what to do next. We all could use a breather, that is for sure.
And this is why I ‘m so glad to see our article get out to Lonely Planet to celebrate and to focus some light on Shikoku. This place, above so many others, can provide some context, time, and atmosphere for healing, resetting, and remembrance. The Shikoku Pilgrimage is, in its very primal element, an act of recovery and rediscovery. Many pilgrims have traditionally walked or traveled the pilgrimage in rembrance of someone they have lost. Others travel the miles to reflect on “the next stage” of their lives. If you should find yourself here in Shikoku, looking for a “fresh start” or looking to “make some kind of peace” with the extreme situation we have all been in, I hope you find something that can aid you on your way.